Powerful Class

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Naval histories of the Powerful Class cruisers of the Royal Navy. Cruisers in this class included HMS Powerful and HMS Terrible. 

  The Powerful and her sister ship the Terrible were the largest cruisers in the world during the 1890's. The Powerful was built by the Naval Construction and Armaments Company in Barrow-in-Furness and launched on the 24th July 1895.  HMS Powerful was built to compete against the New Russian Cruisers  Rurik and Rossiya, these two Russian ships were the largest and longest warships built at the time.  HMS powerful and her sister ship HMS Terrible were very expensive to build costing twice the cost of the Edger class built two to three years earlier . HMS Powerful started service in the China Station and in 1899 became famous for landing  naval brigades (along with HMS Terrible)  at the cape to to take part in the relief of Ladysmith. during the Boer war. She went into refit in 1902 until 1904 when she went into the reserve fleet. used for harbour service in 1912 and from 1915 she was used as a training ship. until the late1920's and was renamed HMS Impregnable II in 1919. finally scrapped in 1929.

Displacement: 14,200 tons,  Speed: 22 Knots, Compliment:  894   Armament: Two 9.2 inch guns, Twelve 6-inch guns,  Sixteen 12 pdr, QF. Twelve 3 pounder QF,  Four 18 -inch Torpedo Tubes (submerged) 

HMS Powerful 24th July 1895 Used for harbour service in 1912. Sold for scrapping 31st August 1929.
HMS Terrible 27th May 1895 Disarmed 1915, used for harbour service in January 1918 and then sold for scrapping July 1932.

HMS Powerful

HMS Powerful in 1897, at the time the largest cruiser in the world, along with it's sister ship HMS Terrible.

HMS Powerful 

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HMS Powerful, 1897

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Rifle Drill on the forecastle of HMS Powerful while serving in the China seas 1898

The officers of HMS Powerful c.1898

Launch of Cruiser HMS Powerful

The ceremony of the naming of the cruiser Powerful took place on Wednesday 24th July 1895 at the works of the Naval Construction and Armaments Company at Barrow-in-Furness, North Lancashire. The Duchess of Devonshire sent the ship afloat and named her the Powerful. The photograph show the scene upon the principal platform immediately after the Duchess cut the last retaining cord in order to release the dogshores and start the ship down the inclined plane of the ways, the customary religious service having been performed previously by the Chaplain.

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Launch of HM Cruiser Powerful

This photograph shows the launching process successfully accomplished. The Powerful was one of the two largest vessels of her class in the world in 1895 (her sister ship the Terrible launched on the Clyde being the other). The pair are each 500 ft long, 80 ft longer than the Magnificent and the Majestic and their sister first-class battleships, they each had a displacement of 14,200 tons, only 700 tons less than that of the battleships named. They were to be 22 knot ships. This Powerful was to be the third ship of her name in the Navy, a Powerful first appearing 113 years ago.

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Displacement: 14,200 tons.    Horse power: 25,000.    Length: 500 ft.    Beam: 71 ft.    Draught: 31 ft.    Armament: two 9.2 ins guns, twelve 6 ins guns and sixteen 12 pounder guns.   Speed: 22 knots.    Complement: 894.

Launch of HM Cruiser Powerful

Here we see the Powerful the moment before the ship actually left the launching ways and became water borne and fairly afloat. As she took the water the timber framework or cradle which had been supporting the vessel as she lay on the building slip, before gliding down the inclined surface of the launching ways, gradually came detached from the hull and floated alongside. When clear of the ways, the Powerful was taken charge of by the tugs in attendance, and guided round by tow ropes from the tugs to the selected place where she was to be berthed for the fitting on board of her engines and boilers, and her general completion for sea.

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The Cruiser Powerful in 1896

The Powerful and her sister ship the Terrible were the largest cruisers in the world during the 1890's. The Powerful was built by the Naval Construction and Armaments Company in Barrow-in-Furness and launched on the 24th July 1895. When this picture was taken she was about to carry out exhaustive steam trials, which the Navy and engineering world watched with particular interest, as they were expected to go far towards definitely settling the question of the suitability of water tube boilers for large ships of war.

HMS Powerful entering Sydney Harbour. 

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'Fiji natives' and crew of HMS Powerful, 1905.

Contributed by Nick Norton.

HMS Powerful, Fiji, 1905.

Contributed by Nick Norton.

Blue Jackets from HMS Powerful. Postcard owned by Mr W D Lindseth. Contact him at gadaveuk@yahoo.com 

Some of the crew form HMS Powerful pictured c.1910. ? Tony Davies

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HMS Powerful

HMS Powerful. 

Both photos provided by Ron Wilkins.

 

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Everything we obtain for this site is shown on the site, we do not have any more photos, crew lists or further information on any of the ships.

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